English is at the heart of the curriculum, impacting not only literacy but social, political and moral understanding. It underpins and connects all other subjects and teaches students to be discerning readers and thinkers. Our aim is to prepare students, regardless of background, to be able to speak with confidence in Standard English, to be critical readers, and to be able to write with accuracy, creativity and flair. Thus English plays a leading role in preparing students to reach their personal goals and approach adulthood within the modern world with confidence. In a world so often based on the soundbite and the trivial, we seek to enable students to interpret lengthy and nuanced texts with confidence. Most importantly, we seek to foster a life-long love of reading, which is crucial not only for high standards of literacy, but also for the development of character.
The department seeks to create a stimulating environment where students explore a range of canonical texts and develop a broad understanding of the rich and diverse history of English literature. Whilst preparation for exams is important, this is not the sole focus of the department. We want students to be inspired and to enjoy their English lessons. As such, we want to give students opportunities for wider reading and to have opportunities to visit the theatre, for example. Our curriculum choices reflect the belief that students be given the opportunity to explore different authors and genres, which will give them breadth and variety. Staff believe whole-heartedly in creating life-long learners who are equipped to communicate effectively, evaluate the material they encounter and appreciate the value of the written word.